The moment is finally here, the video for Kesha’s latest single has finally landed. So clear your calendars, turn up your headphones and get your pre-order on, because we are about to stan like we’ve never stanned before.
7 WONDERS: KESHA – “RAISING HELL (FEAT. BIG FREEDIA)”
The pop legend is back and ballsier than ever, dropping a vibrant video for new single “Raising Hell (feat. Big Freedia)”.
Revisiting her roots of, “Pure, utter, debaucherous joy!” Kesha returns to the musical fray with her eyes set on the pop prize. She teased new album “High Road” with a video earlier this week, flitting between rose-tinted VHS screens, confessional style videos revealing the backstory of the project and loops of a melting candle, sculpted in visage of the star. The singer even invited some fans along to an exclusive preview of her latest single “Raising Hell” to gage their reactions. “I’m floored, and my wig dug a hole to China… I cannot wait for the world to hear this,” exclaims one fan in the neon-lit studio.
Collaborating with Luke Gilford, a fascinating photographer who’s shot most, if not all, of this decade’s most enduring LGBTQ+ icons, whether it be the cast of POSE, musical genius Brooke Candy and legendary actor and activist Pamela Anderson, the pair went to task on creating a world that is simultaneously stark and sweet. With deep cuts of neon lighting pervading the screen, or distinctive pastel hues blurring the lines between the fake and fantastical, Gilford creates an amazing visual story to accompany Kesha’s uplifting track, a dream team of sorts.
Perhaps the most surprising part of the video is Kesha’s spot on Tammy Faye Bakker/Messner impersonation. Messner was a glamorous, larger than life singer and televangelist (sort of like the leading figure in a biblical Real Housewives franchise) in the seventies and eighties, beloved to many in the LGBT community as an ally and icon. Kesha pays homage to the late star in her K Network TV special, encouraging fans to call in for free blessings on 1-855-KESHASAVS.
Keeping It Together
Kesha Faye Bakker shows total resilience in the face of male oppressive power. As the animated church leader, she heals her dramatic parishioners and cures them of their woes before dealing with her own – a pretty powerful metaphor for the stars’ own career. Behind the scenes however, things are a totally different story. The audience is offered plenty of red flags before the abuse brings the televangelist to near death. In a moment of startling brutality, our star has to defeat her foe.
In addition to portraying a murderous TFB, if she’d been costumed by whoever was responsible for styling Sharpay in High School Musical, she’s also giving off major Jayne Mansfield-ness within her uber opulent abode. Surrounded by sleek white marble and religious iconography, the star and her hair (which is so voluminous it should have its own casting credit) bring a rosy warmth to the scene, like a smear of hot pink eyeshadow against a bare eyelid – noticeably stirring the lonely world she occupies when she’s not leading her joyous congregation.
It’s an integral part of any amazing pop video, ala Rihanna’s “Bitch Better Have My Money” and Lady Gaga’s “Paparazzi”. In a beautifully shot turn of events, the singer slowly drags her dead husband out of the house in a plush, feathery robe, taking care not to ruin her beautiful ensemble (which is basically a sugar babies dream garment) in the process. Red hues pierce through this dark and lavish world as she loads the body into a car boot. It’s a Gone Girl-esque moment where you find yourself rooting for the killer, understanding her pain, and wishing you could lend a hand.
On The Road
The video reaches its thrilling finale with a one-woman Thelma & Louise car chase for the digital age. The singer speeds through isolated country roads as chic as ever in a floral headscarf and new brunette do, unrecognisable to families gripped to the affair which is broadcasted in place of her religious-teleshopping gig. After finally succumbing to the police, Kesha greets her captors with smudged mascara and a damning red lip. Sporting a grin at the grainy camera, our beloved blows a kiss in the face of resistance – and then cuts to black.
Kesha’s new 15 track album, High Road, is available for pre-order now and will be released on January 10th, 2020.